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Electronic Code of Federal Regulations

e-CFR Data is current as of September 29, 2014

Title 49Subtitle BChapter V → Part 557


Title 49: Transportation


PART 557—PETITIONS FOR HEARINGS ON NOTIFICATION AND REMEDY OF DEFECTS


Contents
§557.1   Scope.
§557.2   Purpose.
§557.3   General.
§557.4   Requirements for petition.
§557.5   Improperly filed petitions.
§557.6   Determination whether to hold a public hearing.
§557.7   Public hearing.
§557.8   Determination of manufacturer's obligation.

Authority: Sec. 9, Pub. L. 89-670, 80 Stat. 931 (49 U.S.C. 1657); sec. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718 (15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407); sec. 156, Pub. L. 93-492, 88 Stat. 1470 (15 U.S.C 1416); delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.50).

Source: 41 FR 56812, Dec. 30, 1976, unless otherwise noted.

§557.1   Scope.

This part establishes procedures under section 156 of the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966, as amended (88 Stat. 1470, 15 U.S.C. 1416), for the submission and disposition of petitions filed by interested persons for hearings on the question of whether a manufacturer has reasonably met his obligation to notify owners, purchasers, and dealers of a safety-related defect or failure to comply with a Federal motor vehicle safety standard, or to remedy such defect or failure to comply. This part also establishes procedures for holding a hearing on these questions.

§557.2   Purpose.

The purpose of this part is to enable the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to identify and respond on a timely basis to petitions for hearings on whether a manufacturer has reasonably met his obligation to notify or remedy, and to establish the procedures for such hearings.

§557.3   General.

Any interested person may file with the Administrator a petition requesting him to hold a hearing on—

(a) Whether a manufacturer has reasonably met his obligation to notify owners, purchasers, and dealers of a safety-related defect in any motor vehicle or item of replacement equipment manufactured by him;

(b) Whether a manufacturer has reasonably met his obligation to notify owners, purchasers, and dealers of a failure to comply with an applicable Federal motor vehicle safety standard in any motor vehicle or item of replacement equipment manufactured by him;

(c) Whether the manufacturer has reasonably met his obligation to remedy a safety-related defect in any motor vehicle or item of replacement equipment manufactured by him; or

(d) Whether the manufacturer has reasonably met his obligation to remedy a failure to comply with an applicable Federal motor vehicle safety standard in any motor vehicle or item of replacement equipment manufactured by him.

§557.4   Requirements for petition.

A petition filed under this part should be addressed and submitted to: Administrator, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC 20590. Each petition filed under this part must—

(a) Be written in the English or Spanish language;

(b) Have, preceding its text, the word “Petition”;

(c) Contain a brief statement concerning the alleged failure of a manufacturer to meet reasonably his obligation to notify or remedy;

(d) Contain a brief summary of the data, views, or arguments that the petitioner wishes to present in a hearing on whether or not a manufacturer has reasonably met his obligations to notify or remedy;

(e) Specifically request a hearing.

§557.5   Improperly filed petitions.

(a) A petition that is not addressed as specified in §557.4, but that meets the other requirements of that section, will be treated as a properly filed petition, received as of the time it is discovered and identified.

(b) A document that fails to conform to one or more of the requirements of §557.4(a) (1) through (5) will not be treated as a petition under this part. Such a document will be treated according to the existing correspondence and other procedures of the NHTSA, and any information contained in it will be considered at the discretion of the Administrator.

§557.6   Determination whether to hold a public hearing.

(a) The Administrator considers the following factors in determining whether to hold a hearing:

(1) The nature of the complaint;

(2) The seriousness of the alleged breach of obligation to remedy;

(3) The existence of similar complaints;

(4) The ability of the NHTSA to resolve the problem without holding a hearing; and

(5) Other pertinent matters.

(b) If, after considering the above factors, the Administrator determines that a hearing should be held, the petition is granted. If it is determined that a hearing should not be held, the petition is denied. In either case, the petitioner is notified of the grant or denial not more than 60 days after receipt of the petition by the NHTSA.

(c) If a petition submitted under this part is denied, a Federal Register notice of the denial is issued within 45 days of the denial, setting forth the reasons for it.

(d) The Administrator may conduct a hearing under this part on his own motion.

§557.7   Public hearing.

If the Administrator decides that a public hearing under this part is necessary, he issues a notice of public hearing in the Federal Register, to advise interested persons of the time, place, and subject matter of the public hearing and invite their participation. Interested persons may submit their views through oral or written presentation, or both. There is no cross-examination of witnesses. A transcript of the hearing is kept and exhibits may be accepted as part of the transcript. Sections 556 and 557 of title 5, U.S.C., do not apply to hearings held under this part. When appropriate, the Chief Counsel designates a member of his staff to serve as legal officer at the hearing.

§557.8   Determination of manufacturer's obligation.

If the Administrator determines, on the basis of the information presented at a hearing or any other information that is available to him, that the manufacturer has not reasonably met his obligation to notify owners, dealers, and purchasers of a safety-related defect or failure to comply with a Federal motor vehicle safety standard or to remedy such defect or failure to comply, he orders the manufacturer to take specified action to comply with his obligation, consistent with the authority granted the Administrator by the Act.



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